Tube staff plan five days of strikes

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LowLevel

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Whoever mentioned modernisation, I'd cheerfully embrace modernisation if it just meant new technology and better ways of working for all - business, staff and customers. It never does - it is always code for less staff or less pay or both, with decent new equipment or technology not a given either. If the 'm' word is carted out it's rarely with positive consequences for more than 1 of the 3 parties.
 

radamfi

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In non-union, typically white collar industries, management are more likely to start with the intended proposal to start with. They are less likely to propose something draconian because they don't want to lose their best people unnecessarily. In non-union industries, there is the advantage of having packages tailored to the individual, rather than collective bargaining, so there is often no need for disputes to engulf the whole organisation if not everyone is affected. The corollary here is that pay rises and job protection for the best performing staff are better than they would have been if there was a union.
 

Greenback

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In non-union, typically white collar industries, management are more likely to start with the intended proposal to start with. They are less likely to propose something draconian because they don't want to lose their best people unnecessarily. In non-union industries, there is the advantage of having packages tailored to the individual, rather than collective bargaining, so there is often no need for disputes to engulf the whole organisation if not everyone is affected. The corollary here is that pay rises and job protection for the best performing staff are better than they would have been if there was a union.
Not so. The best staff were let go from my former employment as the company simply wanted to reduce the pay bill at any cost, and the best way to do that was to get rid of the highest earning staff no matter how good they were, leaving only the lowest paid staff.

They did not care two hoots about quality of service, or of losing almost all of their most skilled and experienced members of staff in one go. It was all about the bottom line in the medium term, due to panic when the financial crisis hit. So much so that they decided to pay people off and make ahug loss in that one year, so that costs in subsequent years would be reduced to the joy of the shareholders.

Not that I'm bitter or anything, but the real world just doesn't operate the way theory suggests it should.
 

richardderby

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mike brown was posted by the tory government and Boris, the previous director (Tim O Toole) cared about the company, demanded adequate funding from the (Labour) government and staffed the stations. he was told to leave and gave the excuse of wanting to go back to the states, only to return a few months later to run First group. Mr Brown could'nt care less if the stations are staffed (they often are'nt except where they have to be because of the fennell report after king cross), his prime aim is to cut the budget, and appear in a good light for when his bonus is due! he earns over half a million £ a year, anyone that gives a **** about LU have recently left the company, (Australia bound etc:roll:..) it will take another loss of life before these cuts are recinded, LU are removing 20% of the station staff at a time when the underground is carrying an all time record number of people. this is NOT just about ticket office closures. LU want to bring in new staff on £20k year that are not trained in safety or evacuation, and are merely 'customer care bears!'
the next step will be driverless trains, tfl are in talks with RAPT in Paris to move this on as quickly as possible....
the london assembly want to have a public consultation on the job cuts and changes, this should definately be the next step, however it wil not happen as the government and boris will not allow it....
 
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Captain Chaos

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This entire thing this time round is starting to look like it is a case of LU trying to take advantage of the death of Bob Crow. Trying to hit the union now it appears weak. If this is true then it is an utterly despicable thing to be doing IMO. Anyone who tries to take advantage of someone's death should be ashamed of themselves.

Another member stated that we live in a country that is quite well off. That isn't true, is it? We have over a trillion pounds of personal debt in this country with more and more people unable to pay their debts. We only appear to be a rich country. Our ability to buy cars and furniture and all the expensive and comforting trappings of a rich, modern society are all bought normally using debt. It is a false sense of wealth we have. If we were truly wealthy we would not need to purchase things on credit except the most largest purchases. Debt is fuelling our economy by replacing sufficient wage increases with debt. It is a false economy which will fall apart eventually.
 

Tetchytyke

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In non-union, typically white collar industries, management are more likely to start with the intended proposal to start with. They are less likely to propose something draconian because they don't want to lose their best people unnecessarily.
That's certainly one theory, although I don't think it has much bearing on reality. Certainly in my family's experience it is not true, with companies taking the view that long-standing skilled people (i.e. expensive people) can be replaced by semi-skilled people and a day or two of in-house training.

Companies would rather have skilled people, but only if they don't cost any more than semi-skilled people. It's all about the bottom line, and they won't pay a penny out in wages that they don't have to. Management bonuses don't pay themselves, do they.

This is why we've had eight years of real-terms pay cuts across the board. "Don't whinge about pay or we'll fire the lot of you" tends to quell union unrest. Look at Grangemouth if you don't believe me.

richardderby said:
this is NOT just about ticket office closures. LU want to bring in new staff on £20k year that are not trained in safety or evacuation, and are merely 'customer care bears!'
I couldn't agree more. The last Tory government's cuts in the mid-80s, leading to a dilapidated Tube service run on a shoestring by demotivated and ill-qualified staff, was a significant contributory factor to the Kings Cross disaster of 1987.

25 years on, it looks like the Tories are going to be making the same mistakes again. And we won't even have the London Fire Brigade to rely on this time, seeing as Boris has fired all the firemen too.
 
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radamfi

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This entire thing this time round is starting to look like it is a case of LU trying to take advantage of the death of Bob Crow. Trying to hit the union now it appears weak. If this is true then it is an utterly despicable thing to be doing IMO. Anyone who tries to take advantage of someone's death should be ashamed of themselves.
But there was a dispute and strike before he died. Some commentators have stated that there is a power struggle at the top of the RMT meaning that they have to appear to be particularly strong.

Another member stated that we live in a country that is quite well off. That isn't true, is it? We have over a trillion pounds of personal debt in this country with more and more people unable to pay their debts. We only appear to be a rich country. Our ability to buy cars and furniture and all the expensive and comforting trappings of a rich, modern society are all bought normally using debt. It is a false sense of wealth we have. If we were truly wealthy we would not need to purchase things on credit except the most largest purchases. Debt is fuelling our economy by replacing sufficient wage increases with debt. It is a false economy which will fall apart eventually.
I have some sympathy with this view. Undoubtedly a lot of people are over-extending themselves which was particularly the case in the boom years before 2008. I personally strongly believe in saving and investing, meaning that you have plenty of spare cash should you need it in the case of unemployment. However, mortgages are now much harder to get, with the banks being strict in their lending requirements and credit cards are not as freely distributed to those with a poor credit history.

As previously stated, the median weekly wage in the UK is £517 which can go a long way if you are prudent. There is a problem with many people's money management. I'm sure we all know people who earn £50K+ but always seem to have no money whereas there are many people on minimum wage who get by without too much trouble. People generally spend what they earn, regardless of income, and more if they are not disciplined. If wages in the UK were poor, then there wouldn't be so much economic migration to the UK!

Regarding national finances, debt is obviously an issue, but it is a manageable one. The UK still has an excellent credit rating, despite not holding the AAA status with all agencies any more.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Companies would rather have skilled people, but only if they don't cost any more than semi-skilled people. It's all about the bottom line, and they won't pay a penny out in wages that they don't have to.
When I mean 'best people', I really mean 'people difficult to replace'. So if they can get a similar standard of work with cheaper people, then a company will naturally try to get away with it. This might not be a good idea in the long term if the quality of the product suffers and ultimately the market will decide.

Obviously companies will pay as little as they can, but companies are prepared to pay good money to those with skills that are scarce. Why else would companies pay half of all staff over £517 per week?
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
the next step will be driverless trains, tfl are in talks with RAPT in Paris to move this on as quickly as possible....
I went on the driverless metro line 1 in Paris a few weeks ago. They have retrofitted Jubilee Line style doors to the platforms. Is there a technical reason why this can be done on an old Paris metro line but not in London? You would have thought that they wouldn't be able to get away with such a thing in a famously militant country as France.

It is also surprising that France also requires a minimum level of service by law during strikes. How does this level of service compare with what is running on the Underground today?
 

bicbasher

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I notice for the first time during this set of strikes that LU have managed to open the whole of the Jubilee by running it in two sections, with the Wembley Park to Stanmore section operating at 3tph.
 

SS4

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This entire thing this time round is starting to look like it is a case of LU trying to take advantage of the death of Bob Crow. Trying to hit the union now it appears weak. If this is true then it is an utterly despicable thing to be doing IMO. Anyone who tries to take advantage of someone's death should be ashamed of themselves.

Another member stated that we live in a country that is quite well off. That isn't true, is it? We have over a trillion pounds of personal debt in this country with more and more people unable to pay their debts. We only appear to be a rich country. Our ability to buy cars and furniture and all the expensive and comforting trappings of a rich, modern society are all bought normally using debt. It is a false sense of wealth we have. If we were truly wealthy we would not need to purchase things on credit except the most largest purchases. Debt is fuelling our economy by replacing sufficient wage increases with debt. It is a false economy which will fall apart eventually.
We are a rich country. Distribution of said wealth is the problem. There is the cash to run the Tube as a public service with adequate staffing at a decent wage but because it'd mean management bonuses would be lower it's unacceptable to those in charge.

TfL have the strength here IMO because too many people have been infected by a poisonous media campaign against the unions and the government knows it can use its attack dogs to kill dissenters (a metaphor in this case). Just look at the BBC comments on the topic
 

MidnightFlyer

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I don't want to wade in on the reasons for the strike, but to save starting a new thread, I was just wondering how bad the Tube has been today outside of the peaks? I need to get from Euston to Paddington and back tomorrow, out at 1100~, back at 1630~. As Square is closed that would mean Victoria to Oxford Circus then Bakerloo, however if it'll be hellish then I'll happily walk as it isn't that far. Any advice?
 

Pumbaa

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I don't want to wade in on the reasons for the strike, but to save starting a new thread, I was just wondering how bad the Tube has been today outside of the peaks? I need to get from Euston to Paddington and back tomorrow, out at 1100~, back at 1630~. As Square is closed that would mean Victoria to Oxford Circus then Bakerloo, however if it'll be hellish then I'll happily walk as it isn't that far. Any advice?
It was *ok* at around that time this morning. A bit busier than normal. The return in the afternoon will be sardine-like. Is Portland St open? If so, I'd walk there and then use the H+C to Paddington.
 

MidnightFlyer

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It was *ok* at around that time this morning. A bit busier than normal. The return in the afternoon will be sardine-like. Is Portland St open? If so, I'd walk there and then use the H+C to Paddington.
Nope, GPS is shut too. Tempted by the walk in all honesty - 45 minutes isn't bad and I could probably shave a couple of mins off that staying on the back streets until Regents Park too. Thanks for the advice though.
 

ChiefPlanner

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I don't want to wade in on the reasons for the strike, but to save starting a new thread, I was just wondering how bad the Tube has been today outside of the peaks? I need to get from Euston to Paddington and back tomorrow, out at 1100~, back at 1630~. As Square is closed that would mean Victoria to Oxford Circus then Bakerloo, however if it'll be hellish then I'll happily walk as it isn't that far. Any advice?
Road conditions a bit sketchy and slow - so many bikes around looks like a Tour de France day. You should be OK - services seem all right and a lot people are clearly using other options (like their feet !)
 

MidnightFlyer

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Why not walk along euston road to kings cross then from there jump the H+C
I would do that, but I've just rejigged my plans for the day a bit so I'll be hitting London just as the morning peak is beginning to end (about 0900). If reality is as bad as some of the photos today have looked I think I'll be staying away from KXStP at that time tomorrow ;) In all honesty it probably would only save about 10 minutes anyway.
 

MidnightFlyer

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Thanks for the advice guys. My rejigged plans sees me doing Euston-Paddington approx. 0915 and the return somewhere between 1500-1600 - would that be bearable on the Tube?
 

DelayRepay

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Well my annoyance at the strike was reduced a little when I got to travel on an old Routemaster, which had been pressed into service by TFL to provide extra capacity. And for free as the bus didn't have an oyster card reader.

Where have these antique buses and extra drivers come from?
 

Tibbs

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Was rather nice to see that the Routemasters were out again - I saw 2 #29s go past on the Hampstead Road. One including a conductor in what looked like period rig! :lol:
 

chris11256

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It seems like the further into the strike we get, the better the service gets. Coming home yesterday I got to Westminster and District line trains were every 1-3 minutes!

I am wondering how many staff will be willing to loose 5 full days pay and walk out for the whole 5 days, Both Westminster and Tower Hill seemed fully staffed and running normally.
 

richardderby

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RMT releases briefing on the tube dispute in numbers

3 %: The number of tickets the Mayor claims are sold by ticket offices.

23%: Total amount of ticket transactions ticket offices actually have responsibility for.

7.577 Million: The total transactions at ticket offices in 2013, an increase on the 7.418 million
from 2012.

14% Projected increase in passenger numbers over the next five years.

17% Cut in the number of frontline station staff proposed by the Mayor.

52%: The number of tube users unable to buy tickets from a machine because it was broken.

56%: The number of voters who said they would not vote for Boris Johnson again for breaking his promise not to close ticket offices.

66%: The number of passengers opposed to ticket officer closures.
 

DelayRepay

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52%: The number of tube users unable to buy tickets from a machine because it was broken.
Do we know over what period this was calculated? I've never been unable to buy a ticket because the machine was broken. 52% seems very high unless the question was "Have you ever been unable to buy a ticket from a machine because it was broken?" - ignoring the fact that most stations have several machines so if one is broken, you can normally just use another.
 

Tetchytyke

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The Londonist had an interesting blog about the numbers.

http://londonist.com/2014/02/ticket-sales.php

Essentially TfL treat the first journey on a Travelcard as starting at a ticket office, and then all the ones after that as not. Given most Londoners have a Travelcard it's no wonder you get to a figure like 3%. The queues at most central London ticket offices don't back this figure up.

DelayRepay said:
Where have these antique buses and extra drivers come from?
EnsignBus, mostly.

Though the big bus companies have drafted buses in from the provinces. Stagecoach have a weird and wonderful collection of buses out on the 205 this morning, which might help MattE2010 too.
 

Mikey C

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A very high % of tourists may buy their tickets at ticket offices, whereas most locals top up their Oyster on line or at the newsagents, so the spread of use isn't consistent across London stations...
 

Robertj21a

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Seriously? Are you just a bit dim or do you honestly not see what is happening here ? No compulsory redundancies providing staff agree to move into other lesser positions. So a staff member on 30k may be forced to choose 'voluntary redundancy' or take a job on 15k.

Try reading the thread before making silly comments as it has all been covered all ready.

And sorry if I have offended you with my post but I have no time for people coming on here posting such rubbish when their points have all been answered already in the thread.

Don't worry, I'm not offended - I've spent many years dealing with large numbers of supporters of certain Unions, so I'm more than used to their general attitude.
.
 

Clip

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56%: The number of voters who said they would not vote for Boris Johnson again for breaking his promise not to close ticket offices.

.
Is that 56% of what? How many people? How many of those people voted for him last time and how many actually didnt and just answered this question because they dont like Boris?

Its all very well either side giving some sort of percentages and C&P them on her3e but without context they are meaningless.
 
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